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Godfrey won't be jobless for long - ESPN 0 6/19/2003


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Godfrey won't be jobless for long

By Darrell Trimble

NFL Insider

Thursday, June 19

Updated: June 19

10:55 AM ET

After the Tennessee Titans released linebacker Randall Godfrey in a cap-related move, it didn't take long for his phone to start blowing up. Teams in desperate need of linebacking help, like the Packers and the Seahawks, called immediately. Other teams, like Jacksonville and Philadelphia, decided that their units weren't so good that they couldn't add a former second-team All-Pro player to the mix.

Godfrey was cut despite taking a $2.5 million pay cut in February to stay with the team, a move that had some Titans disgusted, but Tennessee's loss could be another team's gain. Godfrey missed eight games last year due to an ankle injury and was fairly productive on a gimpy knee in 2001. However, it was three years ago that he distinguished himself as an extremely effective middle linebacker.

The Titans added Godfrey as a free agent in 2000, and they got more than they bargained for. Coach Jeff Fisher praised Godfrey, calling him an "emotional leader and an inspirational leader" for his defense. The former Bulldog set career highs in tackles (121) and interceptions (two), and was a force, leading the Titans' defense to a No. 1 ranking, ahead of the record-setting Baltimore Ravens.

At 30, he's not past his prime and should he remain healthy there's no reason to think he can't regain the form that made him such a force three years ago. Godfrey will work out for the Jaguars today at Alltel Stadium.

"It's a chance to take a look at a talented individual," Jaguars senior vice president Paul Vance told the Florida Times-Union. "We'll see how it develops. He obviously was a very good player before he was injured."

The Jaguars have done their best to improve their shoddy defense, signing Hugh Douglas and linebacker Mike Peterson, who is slated to start in the middle. Godfrey would move to the strong side, the position he primarily played as a member of the Dallas Cowboys. With that trio, along with holdover Donovin Darius, the Jaguars would have some quality defensive players.

Another reason the Jaguars desire Godfrey is the flexibility he gives them. Peterson has never been a middle linebacker on a full-time basis. If he should falter, Godfrey could shift to the middle and Peterson could slide back to his outside spot.

Godfrey might sign quickly with the Jaguars because it's close to his hometown of Valdosta, Ga., and because he would get to play against the Titans twice a year.

Godfrey would also be an asset in Green Bay and Seattle; neither team in set in the middle. The Packers have rookie Nick Barnett slated to be their starting inside backer, and on the outside they have the solid Na'il Diggs and the injury-prone Hannibal Navies.

In Seattle, Godfrey could perhaps make the biggest impact. The Seahawks have Isaiah Kaczyvenski, Orlando Huff and rookie Solomon Bates as the candidates for starting middle linebacker. But if they could nab Godfrey, he would team with Anthony Simmons and Chad Brown in Ray Rhodes' new defense, and the Seahawks could make a huge improvement.

All these scenarios depend on Godfrey staying healthy, but that shouldn't be a problem. Before last season he had missed only two of a possible 96 games.

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funny, it looked like Jax was going to rebuild for the future after jettisoning Gary Walker, Boselli and McCardell, but with Douglas, Coleman and their interest in these other productive but 30ish players, the Jags will probably be back in cap hell in 2 years :laugh:

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Originally posted by scottb

I’m just hoping the Eagles keep their sideline approach. Their D is already too good for my taste.

I can dig it Scott.... that D is already good, though I thought we closed the gap a bit with our O acquisitions and their loss of Douglas.

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